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Thomas Nagel

Other affiliations: Fordham University, Princeton University, University of Oxford  ...read more
Bio: Thomas Nagel is an academic researcher from New York University. The author has contributed to research in topics: Medicine & Analytic philosophy. The author has an hindex of 38, co-authored 90 publications receiving 18263 citations. Previous affiliations of Thomas Nagel include Fordham University & Princeton University.


Papers
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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Consciousness is what makes the mind-body problem really intractable as mentioned in this paper, which is why current discussions of the problem give it little attention or get it obviously wrong.
Abstract: Consciousness is what makes the mind-body problem really intractable. Perhaps that is why current discussions of the problem give it little attention or get it obviously wrong. The recent wave of reductionist euphoria has produced several analyses of mental phenomena and mental concepts designed to explain the possibility of some variety of materialism, psychophysical identification, or reduction. But the problems dealt with are those common to this type of reduction and other types, and what makes the mind-body problem unique, and unlike the water-H2O problem or the Turing machine-IBM machine problem or the lightning-electrical discharge problem or the gene-DNA problem or the oak tree-hydrocarbon problem, is ignored.

4,669 citations

Book
01 Jan 1986
TL;DR: Nagel as mentioned in this paper argues that our divided nature is the root of a whole range of philosophical problems, touching, as it does, every aspect of human life, and deals with its manifestations in such fields of philosophy as: the mind-body problem, personal identity, knowledge and skepticism, thought and reality, free will, ethics, the relation between moral and other values, the meaning of life and death.
Abstract: Human beings have the unique ability to view the world in a detached way: We can think about the world in terms that transcend our own experience or interest, and consider the world from a vantage point that is, in Nagel's words, "nowhere in particular." At the same time, each of us is a particular person in a particular place, each with his own "personal" view of the world, a view that we can recognize as just one aspect of the whole. How do we reconcile these two standpoints--intellectually, morally, and practically? To what extent are they irreconcilable and to what extent can they be integrated? Thomas Nagel's ambitious and lively book tackles this fundamental issue, arguing that our divided nature is the root of a whole range of philosophical problems, touching, as it does, every aspect of human life. He deals with its manifestations in such fields of philosophy as: the mind-body problem, personal identity, knowledge and skepticism, thought and reality, free will, ethics, the relation between moral and other values, the meaning of life, and death. Excessive objectification has been a malady of recent analytic philosophy, claims Nagel, it has led to implausible forms of reductionism in the philosophy of mind and elsewhere. The solution is not to inhibit the objectifying impulse, but to insist that it learn to live alongside the internal perspectives that cannot be either discarded or objectified. Reconciliation between the two standpoints, in the end, is not always possible.

3,194 citations

Book
01 Jan 1986
TL;DR: Nagel as mentioned in this paper argues that our divided nature is the root of a whole range of philosophical problems, touching, as it does, every aspect of human life, and deals with its manifestations in such fields of philosophy as: the mind-body problem, personal identity, knowledge and skepticism, thought and reality, free will, ethics, the relation between moral and other values, the meaning of life and death.
Abstract: Human beings have the unique ability to view the world in a detached way: We can think about the world in terms that transcend our own experience or interest, and consider the world from a vantage point that is, in Nagel's words, "nowhere in particular." At the same time, each of us is a particular person in a particular place, each with his own "personal" view of the world, a view that we can recognize as just one aspect of the whole. How do we reconcile these two standpoints--intellectually, morally, and practically? To what extent are they irreconcilable and to what extent can they be integrated? Thomas Nagel's ambitious and lively book tackles this fundamental issue, arguing that our divided nature is the root of a whole range of philosophical problems, touching, as it does, every aspect of human life. He deals with its manifestations in such fields of philosophy as: the mind-body problem, personal identity, knowledge and skepticism, thought and reality, free will, ethics, the relation between moral and other values, the meaning of life, and death. Excessive objectification has been a malady of recent analytic philosophy, claims Nagel, it has led to implausible forms of reductionism in the philosophy of mind and elsewhere. The solution is not to inhibit the objectifying impulse, but to insist that it learn to live alongside the internal perspectives that cannot be either discarded or objectified. Reconciliation between the two standpoints, in the end, is not always possible.

2,853 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The need for workable ideas about the global or international case presents political theory with its most important current task, and even perhaps with the opportunity to make a practical contribution in the long run, though perhaps only the very long run as discussed by the authors.
Abstract: By comparison with the perplexing and undeveloped state of this subject, domestic political theory is very well understood, with multiple highly developed theories offering alternative solutions to well-defined problems By contrast, concepts and theories of global justice are in the early stages of formation, and it is not clear what the main questions are, let alone the main possible answers I believe that the need for workable ideas about the global or international case presents political theory with its most important current task, and even perhaps with the opportunity to make a practical contribution in the long run, though perhaps only the very long run The theoretical and normative questions I want to discuss are closely related to pressing practical questions that we now face about the legitimate path forward in the governance of the world These are, inevitably, questions about institutions, many of which do not yet exist However imperfectly, the nation-state is the primary locus of political legitimacy and the pursuit of justice, and it is one of the advantages of domestic political theory that nation-states actually exist But when we are

1,322 citations

Book
01 Jan 1970
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors defend a conception of ethics and a related conception of human nature, according to which altruism is included among the basic rational requirements on desire and action.
Abstract: Just as there are rational requirements on thought, there are rational requirements on action. This book defends a conception of ethics, and a related conception of human nature, according to which altruism is included among the basic rational requirements on desire and action.

987 citations


Cited by
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TL;DR: In this paper, the authors position mixed methods research (mixed research is a synonym) as the natural complement to traditional qualitative and quantitative research, and present pragmatism as offering an attractive philosophical partner for mixed method research.
Abstract: The purposes of this article are to position mixed methods research (mixed research is a synonym) as the natural complement to traditional qualitative and quantitative research, to present pragmatism as offering an attractive philosophical partner for mixed methods research, and to provide a framework for designing and conducting mixed methods research. In doing this, we briefly review the paradigm “wars” and incompatibility thesis, we show some commonalities between quantitative and qualitative research, we explain the tenets of pragmatism, we explain the fundamental principle of mixed research and how to apply it, we provide specific sets of designs for the two major types of mixed methods research (mixed-model designs and mixed-method designs), and, finally, we explain mixed methods research as following (recursively) an eight-step process. A key feature of mixed methods research is its methodological pluralism or eclecticism, which frequently results in superior research (compared to monomethod resear...

11,330 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, a typology for motives of consumer online articulation is proposed, drawing on findings from research on virtual communities and traditional word-of-mouth literature, which is based on the same authors' work.

4,881 citations

01 Jan 2011
TL;DR: To understand the central claims of evolutionary psychology the authors require an understanding of some key concepts in evolutionary biology, cognitive psychology, philosophy of science and philosophy of mind.
Abstract: Evolutionary psychology is one of many biologically informed approaches to the study of human behavior. Along with cognitive psychologists, evolutionary psychologists propose that much, if not all, of our behavior can be explained by appeal to internal psychological mechanisms. What distinguishes evolutionary psychologists from many cognitive psychologists is the proposal that the relevant internal mechanisms are adaptations—products of natural selection—that helped our ancestors get around the world, survive and reproduce. To understand the central claims of evolutionary psychology we require an understanding of some key concepts in evolutionary biology, cognitive psychology, philosophy of science and philosophy of mind. Philosophers are interested in evolutionary psychology for a number of reasons. For philosophers of science —mostly philosophers of biology—evolutionary psychology provides a critical target. There is a broad consensus among philosophers of science that evolutionary psychology is a deeply flawed enterprise. For philosophers of mind and cognitive science evolutionary psychology has been a source of empirical hypotheses about cognitive architecture and specific components of that architecture. Philosophers of mind are also critical of evolutionary psychology but their criticisms are not as all-encompassing as those presented by philosophers of biology. Evolutionary psychology is also invoked by philosophers interested in moral psychology both as a source of empirical hypotheses and as a critical target.

4,670 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article, the authors propose relevance, validity, and reflexivity as overall standards for qualitative inquiry, and discuss specific challenges in relation to reflexivity, transferability, and shared assumptions of interpretation.

4,638 citations

Book
01 Jan 1987
TL;DR: The Intentional Stance as discussed by the authors is the first full-scale presentation of a theory of intentionality that has been developed for almost twenty years, and it can be seen as a pre-emptive strategy of interpretation that presupposes the rationality of the people or other entities we are hoping to understand and predict.
Abstract: How are we able to understand and anticipate each other in everyday life, in our daily interactions? Through the use of such "folk" concepts as belief, desire, intention, and expectation, asserts Daniel Dennett in this first full-scale presentation of a theory of intentionality that he has been developing for almost twenty years. We adopt a stance, he argues, a predictive strategy of interpretation that presupposes the rationality of the people - or other entities - we are hoping to understand and predict.These principles of radical interpretation have far-reaching implications for the metaphysical and scientific status of the processes referred to by the everday terms of folk psychology and their corresponding terms in cognitive science.While Dennett's philosophical stance has been steadfast over the years, his views have undergone successive enrichments, refinements, and extensions. "The Intentional Stance" brings together both previously published and original material: four of the book's ten chapters - its first and the final three - appear here for the first time and push the theory into surprising new territory. The remaining six were published earlier in the 1980s but were not easily accessible; each is followed by a reflection - an essay reconsidering and extending the claims of the earlier work. These reflections and the new chapters represent the vanguard of Dennett's thought. They reveal fresh lines of inquiry into fundamental issues in psychology, artificial intelligence, and evolutionary theory as well as traditional issues in the philosophy of mind.Daniel C. Dennett is Distinguished Arts and Sciences Professor at Tufts University and the author of "Brainstorms" and "Elbow Room." "The Intentional Stance," along with these works, is a Bradford Book.

4,288 citations